Driving drunk is incredibly dangerous. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), about 32 people die in drunk-driving accidents every day. That’s one person every 45 minutes!
Unfortunately, that doesn’t stop many. If you’ve been in a drunk driving accident, you’re not alone. Contact a reputable DWI and DUI law attorney to help you through the complex legal process.
Of course, it’s best to avoid getting into a drunk driving accident in the first place. So if you want to lower the chances of putting yourself in that situation, here’s what you can do:
1. Have a designated driver
Anytime you go out to drink with a group, you should have a designated driver. This is someone who volunteers to not drink for the night so that they can drive everyone home. It’s a good habit to form because you and your friends can take turns being the designated driver and nobody ever has to drive home intoxicated.
2. Know your body’s alcohol tolerance level
Not everyone is the same when it comes to how much alcohol they can tolerate. For example, men tend to tolerate more than women, and bigger people tend to tolerate more than thinner people. So know your body and what it can handle. That way, you can make better judgments about when it’s safe to drive or not.
3. Never drink alone
When you drink alone, you’re at a higher risk of driving drunk. Why? Because you have nobody to stop you from getting behind the wheel and using your better judgment. So if you are alone, ask a buddy to tag along or drink a non-alcoholic beverage instead. You’ll be glad you did.
4. Don’t get in a car with someone who’s been drinking
Getting in a car with someone else who’s intoxicated is just as bad as getting behind the wheel yourself while drunk. And if you’re both drunk, you’re asking for trouble. So try to avoid riding with a drunk driver at all costs. It’s a recipe for disaster.
5. Eat more food
Another way you can minimize the risk of driving drunk is by eating more food. Food helps slow down how fast you get drunk by diluting the alcohol in your system. Basically, it helps lower your alcohol absorption rate.
The opposite is also true: drinking on an empty stomach can accelerate your alcohol absorption rate. So try to balance out the alcohol in your system with food and water. But be careful. You may still get drunk and need to avoid driving anyway.
6. Get a ride
One of the easiest ways to avoid drunk driving is to get a ride. You could hail a taxi, take public transit, or hail a ride with a rideshare app like Uber or Lyft. Do the same to get wherever you’re going in the first place, so you’re forced to get a ride home. Better yet, give someone your car keys. This makes avoiding drunk driving much easier.
7. Wait to sober up
You can also try sobering up before you drive home. Alcohol absorption takes roughly one hour per drink. In the meantime, take a walk or get something to eat. Set a rule to stop drinking 90 minutes before you plan to leave, for example, so you have plenty of time to get sober.
8. Spend the night
Lastly, it’s never a bad idea to stay the night so you don’t have to travel home drunk. For example, you could stay with a friend or family member who lives close. Or you could book a hotel or motel for the night. Do whatever it takes.
At the end of the day, it’s important to take drunk driving seriously because it’s not just about you. It puts you, your passengers, and other drivers at risk. So find a way to avoid it at all costs.